Become a MacRumors Supporter for $25/year with no ads, private forums, and more!


macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

With the launch of iOS 9.3, Apple introduced a new Apple Music API, which is today being promoted through Apple's Affiliate Program Newsletter. The Apple Music API gives developers the resources to expand Apple Music functionality in their apps, through the following features:

- Developers can see if a user is currently a member
- Developers can see which country the users account is based
- Developers can queue up the next song or songs based on a song ID for playback
- Developers can inspect playlists already in My Music or create a new playlists with a title and description (see App Store Review Guidelines for limitation)

The iOS 9.3 Apple Music API has already been built into several music-related apps, such as Shazam. The API is what enables Shazam and other music apps to do things like add songs to Apple Music playlists from directly within the Shazam app.


As noted by MacStories, Apple has also launched a new Apple Music Best Practices webpage for app developers and expanded App Store Review Guidelines for Apple Music. According to Apple's guidelines, apps using the Apple Music API are subject to the following restrictions:

- Apps using the Apple Music API that trigger playback without explicit user action will be rejected
- Apps using the Apple Music API must expose and respect standard media controls such as "play," pause," and "skip"
- Apps using the Apple Music API may not require payment or otherwise monetize access to the Apple Music service (e.g. in-app purchase, advertising, requesting user info)

Apple's developer page on Apple Music also includes technical documentation on using the new Apple Music APIs, a link to the Apple Music Toolbox for finding embeddable widgets, and guidelines on how to refer to Apple Music and portray the Apple Music service within apps.

Article Link: Apple Promotes New Apple Music API Introduced in iOS 9.3


macrumors 603
Sep 8, 2011
Developers can see if a user is currently a member

So Spotify/Tidal/YouTube/etc can know which of their app users have an Apple Music subscription. Would be interesting if they still offering targeted promotions to those users specifically.


macrumors 65816
Nov 13, 2008
Would like to see them make a simple MP3 player that doesn't require a degree to use.
whats an MP3? and MP3 player? ;p

Yes a music player that isn't convoluted and takes away from the experience. back to the drawing board Apple


macrumors 68000
Sep 20, 2014
Did Carl not get this memo? Maybe he wouldn't have dumped his stock had he known Shazam can now talk directly to Apple Music. o_O


macrumors 6502
Apr 21, 2010
Apple's own music player is so god awful. Unintuitive, terrible's almost unusable. Itunes is
Would like to see them make a simple MP3 player that doesn't require a degree to use.
There current one is god awful. I don't, for the life of me, understand why they think it's close to ok. It's unintuitive, the UI sucks...half my music is now in the cloud for some reason and not natively on my phone (can't say if that's the app's fault). When advancing through a song it is very annoying to accidentally click the share button. It's soooo bad.


macrumors 65816
Feb 14, 2013
Spotify also have an API, with similar terms (no monetisation of any kind).

I understand why they do that - if you subscribe to the service, you shouldn't have to pay extra to use it from other apps. However, this really puts the brakes on anybody wanting to make a good alternative music player.

The official Spotify app is total arse. There are so many better things they could do with the backend service. I think I could make a significantly better music app, but without the ability to monetise it at all (both prohibit ads, Spotify even prohibits optional donation buttons too) and considering the amount of work it would take and other opportunities, it turns out to be a very low priority.

It's such a shame, too, because when I moan about specific problems with the Spotify app, lots of people tend to agree. Lots of people also seem dissatisfied with the official Apple Music app. Neither customers are going to get any better alternatives when 3rd-party players are forbidden from any sort of monetisation.

Even if you think you've found some kind of loophole, they will change the terms and shut it down; the motivation behind them is very clear.
  • Like
Reactions: tennisproha

Moi Ici

macrumors 6502
Sep 21, 2012
Would love this with Deezer. Doubt it will happen though, since they are so closely aligned with Apple and their music.


macrumors 603
Sep 23, 2008
Good that Apple also thought of requesting user permission first. I like how Apple puts these kinds of controls in.


macrumors regular
Apr 4, 2012
All this new Apple Music stuff is great, EXCEPT that iPad users still do not have a side-view UI for the friggen 1st party music app on the device. Come on Apple. Support your own damn features.


macrumors 6502
Aug 23, 2015
California, USA
Oh nifty. Would be awesome if Twitter and Instragram took advantage of this in their iOS apps, where artists a user follows can announce new singles, albums etc. and have a button right there for add to Music.
  • Like
Reactions: satcomer


macrumors member
Apr 3, 2010
I wonder if this will open doors to apps like iDJay Pro and external mixing hardware.
Offline playlist on iDJay would be nice too!


macrumors 6502
Dec 10, 2014
Nashville, TN
Would like to see them make a simple MP3 player that doesn't require a degree to use.
I'm not trying to be a smartass, but am I missing something? Sure, there is room for improvement, but I use the music app daily and never had to "figure anything out". It's pretty cut and dry. Hell, I can now not even touch my phone and just say, "Hey Siri, play Deftones" from across the room.


macrumors regular
Mar 23, 2007
Apple "fixed" the iPod/Apple Music app until it was broken. I hate the way you navigate music, the way things are laid out, and the lack of customization regarding both. It's no wonder people are in love with Spotify. Heck Amazon Music, despite its smaller catalog, is better than Apple Music.
  • Like
Reactions: load97


macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2011
Ooh.. I wonder if we'll soon be able to write our own iTunes replacement (or at least, a cruftless, powerful companion?)
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.